by Heidi Doerfert
Why do we set out to feel the spirit of the holidays and end up frazzled with checklist in hand? We want to give thoughtful, carefully selected gifts and yet we find ourselves thanking the founders of Amazon for same-day shipping (and drones!) as we click our way through the shopping frenzy. How many times have you stood in a store gazing at the floor to ceiling shelves of baffling home decor (is that a bronze monkey?) and think about the money and time we spend on well, THINGS that will collect dust on OUR shelves?
Don’t get me wrong, gift giving and receiving are great, but I’ve been thinking about how we can let our family and friends know we care without adding to their stockpile (because Marie Kondo, it doesn’t spark joy). So, let’s think outside the gift box, or bag, and try something new this year!
DON’T JUST BUY, DIY!
A do-it-yourself gift is not only super meaningful it allows you to be still, unplug from the madness and plug into your creative side. A handcrafted-by-you ornament that reminds loved ones of a special trip or milestone will spark memories each time it’s hung on the tree! Or, our DIY Sequin Ornaments are a fun, double-duty option because they can be displayed in a decorative bowl all year long. If you have a fashionista friend on your gift list, make her a pretty piece of jewelry. Check out our latest jewelry projects for inspiration like this gorgeous Mojave Wrap Bracelet and our popular Tie Dye Kit that comes with a T-Shirt, Hair Scrunchie, Bucket Hat and Tote Bag to splash with color! If you have a family member who is health conscious, this is a no brainer: Kombucha & Bottle Charm. Stacee has been drinking kombucha for years and found it way more economical to make on her own. Invite your pals over for a kombucha-making party! You can personalize all of these handmade projects through color and materials. Add your creation to a gift basket with their favorite snack, candle, and cooking herbs (items that naturally disappear on their own).
THE ART OF GIVING
You can give someone the experience (and permission!) to explore their own creative/artistic side. This is a gift that allows someone you love to take a break from the hustle and bustle and enjoy a relaxing activity alone or with people they love. “Self-care” is a buzzword right now but what it really means is taking time to replenish our minds and spirits. Encourage someone to get reflective with a lovely journal and pen. Make it personal by adding little notes of encouragement and writing prompts!
Our DIY Kits are brimming with inspiration and boy, are they FUN to open! From a rainbow of high quality beads to snowflake ornaments to macrame and crystal sun catchers! The best part? It’s two gifts in one – the hands-on activity AND the completed project!
THE GIFT OF TIME
The days are long but the years are short. – Gretchen Rubin
One thing we can’t buy in a store or online is time with our loved ones. When you really think about it, it’s the best present of all. How can we make memories instead of filling the landfill? In my family, the adults decided to swap regular gift giving for a dinner together. Talking, laughing, catching up…it’s priceless. Instead of a gift exchange, how about a charity donation? Gather together and ask each person to write down a cause dear to them, put it in a bowl and everyone draws a name. Later, share what you did to support the organization. Add in some decadent cocoa and coconut whipped cream and it’s suddenly a Hot Chocolate Party! How about putting down the technology and throwing an old school Crafting or Game Night? If it’s hard to remember the last time you went out with friends just for fun, make a date! Research the latest museum exhibit, local play or get your toesies done! If you’re in the San Francisco Bay Area, tell your besties to meet you at one of our upcoming Adult Workshops where you can unwind with a cocktail while you have a blast making something pretty with your pals. The goal is to connect – leaving behind the to-do’s and finding the ta-da moments!
We hope these ideas inspire you and yours to shake things up this holiday season and savor the special time you have together. If you’re pumped but still feel more like Ebenezer than Elf, we understand! Take a cleansing breath and take a look at our blog The Attitude of Gratitude, which has great tips and downloads to get into a positive headspace!